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New honorary doctors in science at Lund University

Stanley Micklavzina Lund University in Sweden has two new honorary doctors in science. One is an entertaining and creative circus artist in the subject of physics. The other is a chemistry professor who is passionate about providing students with an early link to qualified research.

Antennal sensors allow hawkmoths to make quick moves

A hummingbird hawkmoth All insects use vision to control their position in the air when they fly, but they also integrate information from other senses. Biologists at Lund University have now shown how hawkmoths use mechanosensors in their antennae to control fast flight manoeuvres.

Plastic waste disintegrates into nanoparticles, study finds

plastic There is a considerable risk that plastic waste in the environment releases nano-sized particles known as nanoplastics, according to a new study from Lund University. The researchers studied what happened when takeaway coffee cup lids, for example, were subjected to mechanical breakdown, in an effort to mimic the degradation that happens to plastic in the ocean.

More “heatwave” summers will affect animals

Blue tit Heatwaves similar to those experienced in Europe in 2018 can have a very negative impact on animals. A new study from Lund University in Sweden shows that overheated birds have smaller offspring, and that those that are born may have lower chances of survival.

How fruit flies ended up in our fruit bowls

Fruit fly Fruit flies can be a scourge in our homes, but to date no-one has known how they became our uninvited lodgers. For decades, researchers have searched for their origins and now a Swedish-American research team has succeeded. They have also discovered that fruit flies in the wild are far more picky than their domesticated counterparts, a factor that long ago probably prompted the flies to move in with people.

Remarkably preserved fossil sea reptile reveals skin that is still soft

Fossilized skin The remains of an 180 million-year-old ichthyosaur (literally ‘fish-lizard’) have been analysed, and the fossil is so well-preserved that its soft-tissues retain some of their original pliability. The study, published in Nature, contributes to our understanding on how convergent evolution works, and shows that ichthyosaurs adapted to marine conditions in a way that is remarkably similar to that of modern whales.

Standardized greenhouse gas measurement helps to predict and mitigate climate change

Measuring equipment at Norunda. The Integrated Carbon Observation System, ICOS, announces that Norunda and additional 14 greenhouse gas measurement stations have been certified for standardized data production. ICOS data helps to reveal the carbon emissions and sinks on a European level, essential for predicting climate change and mitigating its consequences.

Brilliant iron molecule could provide cheaper solar energy

The new molecule (Illustration: Nils Rosemann) For the first time, researchers have succeeded in creating an iron molecule that can function both as a photocatalyst to produce fuel and in solar cells to produce electricity. The results indicate that the iron molecule could replace the more expensive and rarer metals used today.

Historical climate important for soil responses to future climate change

The long-term drought experiment in the Netherlands from where the soils were sampled. A rain curtain has excluded precipitation from entering the soil during the summer for 18 years, simulating the drought. (Photo: Evy de Nijs) Researchers at Lund University in Sweden, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Amsterdam, examined how 18 years of drought affect the billions of vital bacteria that are hidden in the soil beneath our feet. The results show that this type of extreme weather determines how soils respond to future climate change.

Climate science and climate politics

Jasmine Livingston It is important to make science relevant for policy makers, CECs Jasmine Livingston argues in her recent thesis.

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Lena Björk Blixt
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+ 46 709 79 79 70

Lena [dot] Bjork_Blixt [at] science [dot] lu [dot] se